Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


It is so unfeminine and indelicate for young ladies to have appetites.

She was tall, but not so tall as to be unfeminine in her height.

It is a sin and a shame for a woman to be untidy or careless in her dress; it is unfeminine!

You may be thankful it was my indecorous, unfeminine self, and not any of the proprieties.

Independence is unfeminine: what a pity that starvation and insanity are not unfeminine also!

Independence is unfeminine, but what provision is made for dependence?

Then, as if abashed by her unfeminine behavior, she drew back, in shame.

Your words are such as ought not to be used: violent, unfeminine, and untrue.

But if these things are unfeminine it is no answer to say that they fit into each other.

Shall a woman be flayed alive because it is unfeminine in her to fight for her own skin?


mid-14c., "of the female sex," from Old French femenin (12c.) "feminine, female; with feminine qualities, effeminate," from Latin femininus "feminine" (in the grammatical sense at first), from femina "woman, female," literally "she who suckles," from root of felare "to suck, suckle" (see fecund). Sense of "woman-like, proper to or characteristic of women" is recorded from mid-15c.

The interplay of meanings now represented in female, feminine, and effeminate, and the attempt to make them clear and separate, has led to many coinages: feminitude (1878); feminile "feminine" (1640s); feminility "womanliness" (1838); femality (17c., "effeminacy;" 1754 "female nature"). Also feminality (1640s, "quality or state of being female"), from rare adjective feminal (late 14c.), from Old French feminal. And femineity "quality or state of being feminine," from Latin femineus "of a woman, pertaining to a woman."



Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.